Hi supporters, gamers and backers :)
While our Kickstarter campaign is live (http://kck.st/1d2sRN6), I wanted to share the last of my posts about the illustrators that have been working with me.
This time we're going to Germany, where Caner Inciucu is living with his wife and son.
Caner has been on the project ever since the first pencil drawing was made for Burning Suns. So it's truly an great story to share with such a talented person.
If you want to see the things Caner has done, make sure to check out his DeviantArt account > Redan23
Talent, precision and hard work
I've seen a lot of talented people through my years in the world of design, games and education. So the nature of talent isn't surprising me anymore (there's a lot out there), but the way the talent is used... And here Caner stands out among the crowd!
Caner doesn't just "rely" on his talent - he's a dedicated and hard working artist - that doesn't leave work half done! Caner want everything to be just perfect, and he'll be working on it until it's been achieved. A valuable trait in a freelancer.
Many freelancers and up-and-coming artist could learn from him and the effort he puts into his work.
Fit for details and epic stories
I must admit that I've been lucky with the illustrators I've chosen for my board game project. All of them have fitted into their role and task, and I've had the pleasure of being able to use their talent in so many ways.
With Caner, the case was as clear as crystal!
His sense for detail, depth and atmosphere in every drawing is a complete and perfect fit for a scope like Burning Suns.
Atmosphere is everything - and Caner's illustrations brings those heroic and pivotal moments to life.
Get inspired by Caner's drawing - by watching his videos on Youtube.
An easy going and transparent process
Though I guess I'm also responsible for the nice tone and easy going vibe in our production of Burning Suns. It's undeniable that Caner is a very nice person to talk to - and very easy to be constructive with.
Caner has a good understanding of what you want portrayed - and he's always making sure that you'll be able to follow the process as the illustration evolves from the first few strokes to a full size art piece.
When handling these kind of long-distance projects where you can't just meet up. It's essential to be able to follow the process and catch up on errors right away. Caner makes this discipline a walk in the park from the very beginning.
Commitment and friendship
I believe that I've established a great relationship with all of my freelancers, and that we would be able to work together for a long time to come.
I've been so lucky to meet Caner during last years "SPIEL" in Essen. It was a really great and fun experience - and I hope I'll be able to do that again. Commitment and friendship can be strong tools when working with a freelancer.
I'll finish this post by giving Caner my highest recommendations!
If you need epic illustrations for your board or computer game - Caner is the man to go to! Raden23 on DeviantArt
Be sure to check out our Kickstarter campaign - and find more of Caner's and my other illustrator's great work: Burning Suns on Kickstarter
Best regards Emil Larsen, SunTzuGames
Hi again all of you board game creators,
Today I wanted to share yet another one of my great illustrators with you :)
An illustrator I've been working with from the very beginning - and who keeps presenting wonderful artwork for all of us to enjoy in Burning Suns.
Angelita Ramos is a freelance illustrator and author from the United States, who was hired on to the Burning Suns project over a year ago.
Angelita has many years of experience with illustration, and has done a wide variety of work on both book covers, logos and fan art.
- And now, she is also well rounded in the world of science fiction ;)
Communication is key
As a project manager and officer you don't have to remind me that communication is key to success, no matter the industry or profession you're working with, but to see results unfold in correspondence to communication has never been clearer to me - than when I started to work with Angelita.
Angelita is kind and friendly to talk to and she always makes you feel good about your product wishes and ideas. She knows the importance of keeping a productive dialog with room for ideas, and she's not afraid of telling you if she has run into trouble, which makes it so much easier to sort out, before anyone has wasted precious time.
Make sure to check out her splendid work on DeviantArt!
Ping Pong Feedback
While some illustrators like to run with the ball as soon as they gets it, Angelita likes to keep things in a very transparent progress continuously updating the status of her work - and asking for feedback.
As the employer or project manager it's very reassuring to work with someone like Angelita, who never runs away from an idea or trashes your input.
Angelita is also the architect behind SunTzuGames' logo - depicting the head and torso of a science fiction inspired samurai.
Commitment and exploration
When you're working with illustrators over such a long time as I've done, you know that commitment is one of the most important factors for a successful outcome.
I've had a great time exploring ideas with Angelita, and she is always ready to try out something different in order for us to achieve our goal. Angelita is always keeping it professional - with a friendly and positive attitude.
I've never had the chance to read Angelita Ramos' book - Polar Bear Kisses, but if it's anything like her other work, people won't be disappointed!
(don't worry, it doesn't have anything to do with our friendly fellow on the left ;)
Strength in character and emotions
I was lucky to find Angelita when I needed my characters and aliens illustrated, and by now (or after reviewing more of Angelita Ramos' great work) I'm sure you know that Angelita's strength lies in characters.
It doesn't matter whether we talk aliens, human or animals, Angelita knows how to make them "likable", "full of hatred", "fearsome" or "curious" - she has the spectrum of emotions in her power.
It goes without saying that I can recommend Angelita Ramos all the way!
She is a trustworthy, professional and kind colleague to have on your projects, no matter the scope and time frame.
Best regards Emil Larsen, SunTzuGames
Dear gamers and developers,
I've put together yet another post where I talk about one of the illustrators I've been so fortunate to work with for the last many months.
Tony Andreas Rudolph, also known as Zulusplitter when being creative with Photoshop, is a German artist currently working as a concept artist for Trixter in Munich.
I was lucky to get him involved in Burning Suns when I had settled upon some of the more significant changes in the game. He turned out to be the perfect match for the many planets, alien worlds and asteroids I was in desperate need of at the time.
Enjoy even more of Zulusplitter's work here: www.zulusplitter.de
Tony was actually recommended by one of my other illustrators, which is always a good sign! I waited to contact him until I had enough work for him, so that he actually got something out of choosing me as a client. Remember, the deal and proposal goes both ways ;)
Going to DeviantArt and searching for illustrators can be quite challenging, surely there are enough talented people there, but you need to consider the following things.
Make sure to have the answers for these questions before hand (Read my other post about freelancers here)
It truly was a no-brainer when I got a recommendation from my illustrator which had been on the project from the very beginning. After a quick look at Tony's work - I knew I had to get him on the team :)
You can see Tony's cool illustrations here: http://zulusplitter.deviantart.com/
Locating the forces of an illustrator
It's easy to see where Tony's forces lies, when you look in his gallery - It's filled with nice landscapes, beautiful backgrounds and lots of scenery.
But even so, I wasn't going to assign him anything before he had been let loose with a completely blank canvas.
As with every illustrator that has ever working on my projects, I need to experience what drives them to the decisions in their work, in order for me to be able to give them the exact tasks for them.
This is both to determine flow of work, amount of details in work descriptions, the drive in the person, imagination, and communication skills.
Tony is certainly not in lack of any imagination or drive and as it turned out - he also knows how to create great sci-fi stuff like digital gadgets and ships! :)
Working with Tony
Tony is an easy going guy who has been a great asset to the team. When Tony was added to the team as the last illustrator, the circle felt complete and Burning Suns has never looked this great.
Tony has earned a permanent place in the team - and I hope to be able to work with Tony in many months to come.
Like my other illustrators I can only give Tony my best recommendations - you won't be disappointed with his sense for scenery, environment and atmosphere!
Emil Larsen, SunTzuGames
Hey board game developer :)
I wanted to share some experiences I've had with board game production. I've been working on my own board game "Burning Suns" for almost a year now, and I thought it would be foolish not to share the knowledge I've gained over the many months.
My team and I are working alongside each other on both prototype and final components, and we're all working very coherently and close together in order to make sure things stay within the project scope and our goals are the same.
I'll try to go through some of the different digital production elements here. Enjoy :)
The index of all things
(I'm assuming that you're already well on the way with the ideas, blossoming in both text documents and drawings ;-)
Your first step is to create the "box" in which all things will be stored and sorted.
You'll want to be very systematic in order to make sure everything is just as you want them to be.
(e.g. in folder "1 - Rules") Early prototype rules ver2.
(e.g. in folder "6 - Player tokens") Elves - Leader token ver3.
Download the following spreadsheets to view some examples.
The project website of a board game production
Your next task is to create a project website for your board game. This will be the reference point for everyone involved in the production (no need to say, that this needs to be password protected ;)
You'll find a web solution like Weebly (that I'm using myself) to be very handy. A lot of "drag and drop" equals no trouble focusing on other things.
On this website you'll include subjects like
Make sure that it's regularly updated - and that you give your team everything they need in order to complete their tasks.
A few last things...
When you start to include people in the production process, make sure that you guys have a sharing method that works.
I like to use "SugarSync", so that we're all working on the same files - and that I don't get into any problems with different versions etc.
Without a syncing tool - you'll find yourself doing too much upload / download / back / forth with your email box.
Let your email box handle the communication with your team - not the file transfers.
Get an early economical perspective
When you settle on some of your production choices, it is time for you to look into the economy side of your board game project.
In other words... you should get an early quote on your production breakdown, and run through your financial possibilities - in the end - if your project doesn't become sustainable, you won't be able to do this as often as you would like to ;)
I hope this will put you off to a good start on your own board game production.
Happy gaming and holidays out there! :)
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